This course focuses on critical issues and key developments relating to public management, such as leadership, strategy, performance management and human resource management.
Masters 2016/2017 in Nottingham United Kingdom. MPA - Master of Public Administration
The Master of Public Administration (MPA) is an internationally recognised qualification providing the competencies and knowledge necessary for public service managers to manage creatively in challenging policy environments. It is suitable for new graduates and those with managerial and/or public sector work experience.
The focus of the programme is on critical issues and key developments relating to public management, such as leadership, strategy, performance management and human resource management. With the current developments in countries around the world, this is one of the most exciting times to be studying anything to do with the public sector, governance and government, and the delivery of services to meet people's needs.
The aim of all of our programmes is to provide students with the skills, knowledge and tools to make sense of the world of public policy and management, so that they can analyse situation and problems, and use this to improve its practice. The course is designed to blend both practitioner an academic perspectives on public management, and the wide range of modules draws on examples from different countries around the world.
The programme is aimed at both those who want to pursue a career in the public sector and those who want to further their career in the public sector. The course focuses on critical issues and key developments relating to public management (eg. leadership, strategy, performance management and human resource management).
Our students come from a variety of backgrounds. Some students come straight from their first degree onto the masters without much work experience, and others currently work in a public sector organisation (NHS, local authorities, education sector, police) and take the course on a part-time basis. About half of our students are from the UK, and the other half from abroad. At the moment we have 14 or 15 different nationalities amongst our students.
The variety of our student body adds a hugely beneficial and interesting dimension to the teaching through the exchange of experience of different practices and underlying assumptions on which these practices are built. The dialogue around these differences plays a substantial role in the learning environment. As admission into University programmes is conditional on a good level of English, the discussions are accessible and of interest to all students.
International curricula focusing on key public sector developments in the UK, the EU, the US and other countries
Research-informed curricula reflecting the expertise of staff in the fields of public management, policy analysis and social policy
Flexible programme of study to facilitate part-time study
Nottingham is a student-friendly, cosmopolitan and vibrant city with many cultural, social and leisure attractions, with good transport links, and with easy access to the countryside and London
Friendly and supportive learning environment set in a very scenic campus
The course is designed to blend both practitioner and academic perspectives on public management, and the wide range of modules draws on examples from different countries around the world.
Modules are normally taught by a mix of lectures, group-work, and class discussion. Most modules are taught weekly over one semester; a few modules are taught over three consecutive days. Part-time students need to come into the University for about 30 days per academic year.
Taught modules are normally assessed by a 3,000 to 5,000-word essay (or equivalent). The 15,000 word dissertation is a key component of the masters degree as it gives students the opportunity to conduct independent research on a topic of their choice under the supervision of a leading public or social policy analyst.
Students are required to submit an assessed dissertation proposal in advance of starting their dissertation. Support for producing the dissertation is provided by a research methods module, the dissertation and by one-to-one supervision. Past dissertation topics include:
Managing people in the public sector - recruitment and staff training
Impact of privatisation in the NHS on quality of care
Effectiveness of outsourcing in the NHS
Public procurement and corruption in Philippines
Central and local government interaction in budgetary process in Kazakhstan
Electoral systems/democracy Hong Kong and Taiwan
China's monitoring system to deal with corruption of civil servants
We also offer a Public Administration Postgraduate Diploma - students pursue the same programme of study as masters students, but do not undertake a dissertation. Diploma students can transfer to the masters course if they perform satisfactorily in the first semester (if full-time) or in the first academic year (if part-time).
Dissertation in Public Administration
Leadership, Strategy and Performance in the Public Sector
Policy Analysis: Concepts and Theories
Public Management and Governance
Public Sector Financial Management
Research Methods and Research Management
Students have to choose a further 20 credits of elective modules, from an approved list.
The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.
Graduates of the MPA have successfully pursued careers in the public and voluntary sectors as managers and policy analysts. The MPA is rapidly becoming a standard global qualification for public servants.
Undertaking postgraduate work fosters many vital skills and may give you a head start in the job market. Studying at this level allows you to develop qualities of self-discipline and self-motivation that are essential to employment in a wide range of different fields.
A postgraduate degree from an institution such as The University of Nottingham shows potential employers that you are an intelligent, hard-working individual who is bright and flexible enough to undertake any form of specific career training.
"I found the course very useful because the topics were relevant to my career interests. This has definitely given my CV more clout. It has broaden my knowledge and helped me improve transferable skills such as communication skills gained through writing essays and presentations."
Average starting salary and career progression
In 2014, 95% of postgraduates in the School of Sociology and Social Policy who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £21,692 with the highest being £30,000.*
*Known destinations of full-time home and EU postgraduates, 2013/14.
Career prospects and employability
The acquisition of a masters degree demonstrates a high level of knowledge in a specific field. Whether you are using it to enhance your employability, as preparation for further academic research or as a means of vocational training, you may benefit from careers advice as to how you can use your new found skills to their full potential.
Our Careers and Employability Service will help you do this, working with you to explore your options and inviting you to attend recruitment events where you can meet potential employers, as well as suggesting further development opportunities, such as relevant work experience placements and skills workshops.
Career planning and development
We have developed and are developing close links with the National School of Government and other public sector bodies to provide internship opportunities to MPA and MPP students. The School of Sociology and Social Policy is developing close links with Nottingham Citizens. We will inform you of these internship and other opportunities throughout the course.
The Careers Group of the University of London provides much information on internships and careers in government and politics in its Looking for Jobs and Internships in Politics guide.
The Graduate School also provides internship and placement opportunities, as well as providing a range of opportunities for postgraduate students to develop their skills and enhance their employability.
The University and the University's Students' Union also run a variety of student volunteering schemes.
The UK government, via the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), has established a Graduate Talent Pool, designed to offer internships to graduates.
Entry requirements 2.2(Lower 2nd class hons degree or international equivalent)
IELTS 6.5 (no less than 6.0 in any element)
If these grades are not met, English preparatory courses are available